Hidden gem hotels/inns in New Orleans? Help!

Feb 2nd, 2008, 10:55 AM
  #1  
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Hidden gem hotels/inns in New Orleans? Help!

We (my mom, my sister, and I) are headed to New Orleans for a girls' weekend in March... Any help with lodging? We're looking for something in the $150/night range and focusing on the French Quarter. Trip Advisor is making me crazy because the reviews are extreme - the bad reviews, where they appear, are REALLY bad.

We are also interested in the Garden District but are concerned about getting back and forth on the trolley - is it relatively safe and simple traveling late at night (post dinner and several drinks)?

B&Bs, boutique hotels, small/quaint/historic inns work also. We liked the look of St. Pierre and St. Marie but the bad reviews are pretty bad. Help, help, help!
ceb1222 is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2008, 10:59 AM
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If you want a quiet place in the French Quarter, consider the Dauphine Orleans. It's in the FQ but is quiet - and would be great for walking back after dinner. I recommended to my mom and she and her friends have made it "their" place to stay in NO.
starrs is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2008, 12:33 PM
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We have stayed at the Provincial for years and love the location and the atmosphere.

Several years ago my cousins and I took out mothers to NO and had "petites suites" which opened onto our private little courtyard.
You might be want to consider such a room for the three of you.

The excellent restaurant "Stella!" is located there.

http://www.hotelprovincial.com/

We also have enjoyed the Royal Sonesta and the Le Richelieu.

www.sonesta.com/RoyalNewOrleans/

http://www.lerichelieuhotel.com/

Have a wonderful time in NOLA.

Byrd
Byrd is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2008, 12:41 PM
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I would also recommend the Dauphine Orleans for a first choice. For any other hotel, pay attention to the bad reviews and stay away.
Wayne is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 09:48 AM
  #5  
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I looked at the Dauphine but this is one with mostly good reviews and then a few extreme bad ones, as well as some candid pics that look pretty scary. It sounds like parts of the hotel are excellent and then there are some older parts that have not received as much attention? I can't figure it out... It sounds like there are two buildings, does anyone have any advice for which to try to book? Maybe one is better than the other...

Le Richelieu was a consideration, but is now out because they're booked!

We're not looking for perfection, but we do want a clean and at least somewhat attractive place to stay!

ceb1222 is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 09:54 AM
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Every hotel in the world has SOME negative reports. (SOme people are incrdibly fussy, or have unrealistic expectations for twhat they pay - or like to provehow important they are by complaining about things not to their standard).

You need to balance the good and bad reports and consider the source of the worst ones. (I generally ignore reports about bad service - since I think many come from people who cause bad service through their attitudes - or expect staff to grovel.) But - if you're talking about cleanliness or major disrepair - that's a different issue.
nytraveler is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 10:27 AM
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Yes, the Dauphine Orleans has two buildings. I haven't looked at the website in a long time but it used to explain that. On one side of the (narrow) road is a more modern hotel room. These may be some of the rooms that may be more dated. I don't know. But, they are regular hotel rooms.

On the other side is nirvana. I'm not sure what they are called but I think they are called courtyard or carriage rooms. You open an iron gate with a key off the street and enter a brick floored courtyard with a fountain in the middle. Surroundineg the courtyard on three sides are the rooms in 2 story buildings. The rooms are absolutely gorgeous. My room had an original brick wall, four poster bed, beautifully decorated. All you hear is the music of the water in the fountain. It is a world apart.

Both offer the amenities of the hotel which used to include shuttle service and free breakfast. The staff was VERY nice and very helpful when I was there.

I love the courtyard rooms, but my mom has returned time and time again to the regular hotel rooms because her friends wanted to stay on a tighter budget.

With your budget, you would probably be in the hotel section. But, you are just a block or so from the bustle of the French Quarter but a (quiet) world away.

Anyway, that's why I like it.

Keep in mind that if you ask 10 people on this board the same question you are going to get a range of opinions. All are valid opinions but not all will represent what you like or think. You just have to read the reviews with that in mind. I've traveled with some people who are never happy no matter what.

Good luck with your planning.
starrs is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 10:33 AM
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We have stayed at the Dauphine Orleans the last few trips to N.O. Have peen satisfied with it.

We used to stay at Le Richelieu but it seemed to go downhill last time we were there, and the Dauphine is much closer to the rest of the Quarter.
Rich is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 11:01 AM
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Thanks for all the help... the Dauphine is one of the ones I think we've narrowed it down to... The bad review on that one said the beds were old with yellow linens and they wouldn't stay the night. There appears to be no way to ensure a courtyard/carriage house room online... I wonder if I call if we could be guaranteed something like that.

Any thoughts on staying in the Garden District and taxi-ing to the FQ? Or taking the streetcar? We have found a B&B that looks intriguing located in the Garden District.

We want to spend time in both areas of town, so either is okay with us. We thought about staying one night in one area, the other in the other, but that will take up time switching locations that we'd rather spend drinking Hurricanes!
ceb1222 is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 11:15 AM
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What was the date of the review that talked about yellow linens?
Have there been good reviews since them?
If so, ignore the "yellow linen" review by a super-picky reviewer.
starrs is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 11:32 AM
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ceb, the pictures are on the website -
http://www.dauphineorleans.com/guestrooms.html

The room with the brick wall is one of the Carriage House Courtyard rooms.

Evidently, there are some more Herman Courtyard rooms that I don't remember or didn't know existed.

The rest of the rooms are the hotel rooms. If you click on the photos, they will show you the King Standard rooms, queens/doubles, etc.

So, you can see what the different styles of rooms look like. You'll have to go to the booking function to get prices for your dates.

The website pretty well describes what the amenities are (click on "amenities".
starrs is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 01:47 PM
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Thanks, Starrs. It was a fairly recent posting (Nov 2007). From that and another review it sounds like maybe they have some older rooms that they may only go to if they're booked... Or, you could be right and it's a super-picky reviewer. It does seem like splitting hairs when most of the other reviews are good.

My mom and sister have been really intrigued by the garden district in this little process, while I've been focusing on the FQ. It may come down to whose opinions "win out" on this, so any other pros/cons for FQ/GD would help.

Now, I'm off to watch the SB (Super Bowl).
ceb1222 is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2008, 01:50 PM
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I read the reviewer. She was pissed off because her Orbitz reservation was messed up. That review and one about a messed up handicap accessible reservation were the only negative ones I read. Those were sour grapes reviews. The ones before and after those were giving 4 and 5 ratings.

Those were some of the best ratings I've seen on tripadvisor for a non-4star resort.

Book directly through the hotel and you won't have their problems.

Enjoy the SuperBowl.

There is a great restaurant in the Garden District that I'll try to think the name of. And, Pascale Manale's BBQ shrimp is one of my favorite meals ANYWHERE!

starrs is offline  
Feb 4th, 2008, 06:23 AM
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ceb1222,

You asked about the "trolley" (streetcar is what we call them in New Orleans), and the answer is that yes they are very safe, and a very good way to get around town.
bkluvsNola is offline  
Feb 6th, 2008, 03:34 PM
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I took my wife to the Dauphine on our first trip together to NOLA in 2002, and it was more of a precautionary move on my part than a quest for the perfect accomodation. It's central, across the street from Bayona (!), had an on-site wonderful bar - which many former visitors who've found other favorite lodging still use as a meeting place. The bellman was a sweetheart.

My wife needs a courtyard to hang out in and enjoy a quiet morning/mid-day/evening chill from the bustle, and we've been staying in cottages and B&B's that meet the criteria since that 1st trip. One of our favorites is the Arts B&B in the Marigny neighborhood. The hosts are an eclectic pair who've decorated the place in local art (the neon jellyfish are created by Eric!). The Frenchmen Street experience is fairly bohemian, and not at all like the Bourbon St melee. It deserves a peek even if you don't stay in the neighborhood - which is chock-full of great B&B's btw. enjoy!

ronin is offline  
Mar 4th, 2008, 04:41 PM
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My favorite hotel has to be the Avenue Garden Hotel on St. Charles Ave in the Garden District. It's about a block away from the Pontchartrain Hotel and maybe 3 blocks from Lee Circle. The hotel is converted from an old mansion with a very nice garden area in the middle. It has a very classic feel and great staff. The St. Charles streetcar is literally right out the front door. I stayed here for $49/night using hotels.com.
arronm39 is offline  
Mar 4th, 2008, 05:00 PM
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I loved the Hotel Provincial. We saw the bad reviews. One talked about a ghost. One talked about a musty smell and I agree with this one if you stay in the building that faces the river. I found the staff wonderful, the room beautiful, and the area great.
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Mar 4th, 2008, 05:43 PM
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I love International House. It's wonderful and the rooms are really nice. It's not in the Quarter, but it's close in the CBD.

I'm not sure if they will fit in your budget, but I also like Renaissance Arts and Loews in the CBD/Warehouse District.
mah1980 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 05:49 PM
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Now I'm going to be one of those awful people who solicits advice and doesn't follow any of it... My mom found a B&B in the Garden District that fit our criteria, so we're going to try it out... McKendrick Brough Houes, is the name. I haven't seen it mentioned here, so at least it will make for an exciting new piece of information.

I'm leaving tomorrow (Friday) at 7 PST, but if anyone has any last minute suggestions for restaurants, I would appreciate it. (And maybe I'll even listen this time). We are planning on having brunch at the Commander's Palace - my sister's is a chef and highly recommended it, not to mention the fact that it's on most must-do lists. I read somewhere that brunch is one of the best values in the city?

Is Emeril's worth the hype? Any other suggestions?

Thanks again for all the advice, hopefully it will help others looking for the same thing!
ceb1222 is offline  
Mar 7th, 2008, 03:04 PM
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The Voodoo museum is nice for female family bonding.
Kailani is offline  

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